Oakland Loses Another One to KC 3-1; A’s on four game skid

Oakland A’s catcher Stephen Vogt throws his bat after striking out in the second inning against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City on Fri Jun 24, 2022 (AP News photo)

Oakland Loses Another One to KC 3-1

By Barbara Mason

Friday night the Oakland A’s (23-49) took on another struggling team In Kansas City, the Royals (26-43). Oakland is coming off three straight losses against Seattle at the Oakland Coliseum.

Cole Irving took the mound for Oakland. He pitched 5 2/3 innings and did have a good game but it wasn’t enough as the A’s failed to give him any run support in the 3-1 loss at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.

He has not won a game since April 24th. Something that he rarely does is allow more than a single home run in a game but Kansas City’s Edward Olivares did exactly that hitting one in the third inning and a second in the fifth inning.

The Olivares home run in the third inning gave Kansas City the early lead 1-0. In the fourth inning Seth Brown hit a single and drove Tony Kemp home to tie up the game 1-1.

Olivares’ second home run gave the lead back to the Royals in the fifth inning 2-1. The Royals solidified the win in the sixth inning when Carlos Santana singled driving Hunter Dozier home.

Zach Greinke pitched for Kansas City back with the Royals handing the A’s their fourth loss in a row.

Oakland had six hits in the game but but only managed the one run in the fourth inning. They could not string hits together and that has been a problem for the team all season. Seth Brown and Sean Murphy each had two hit games for the A’s.

Oakland will play game two of this series at 1:10 PM tomorrow afternoon. On the mound for the A’s will be Jared Koenig (1-2, 6.59) who had a great game in his last outing with a much improved ERA at 6.59. His last win was Sunday beating the Royals 4-0. Kansas City will start Brad Keller (2-8, 4.30).

Oakland A’s podcast with Jeremiah Salmson: A’s open three game set with Royals in Kansas City tonight

The Oakland A’s Sheldon Neuse slides in at home plate in the bottom of the first inning to score the A’s only run of the game against the Seattle Mariners at the Oakland Coliseum on Thu Jun 23, 2022 (AP News photo)

On the A’s podcast with Jeremiah:

#1 Jeremiah, Oakland A’s pitcher Frankie Montas left little doubt that he’s a front line pick for the July trade deadline. Montas went eight innings and threw a no hitter for 7.2 innings against the visiting Seattle Mariners on Thursday afternoon at the Oakland Coliseum.

#2 Montas has been keeping opponents off balance all season long with his brand of pitching. Opposing teams know that they’ll have their hands full when they face him.

#3 The pair of wild pitches by reliever AJ Puk in the top of the ninth that allowed the tying run and go ahead run had to be one of Puk’s worst meltdowns this season?

#4 It also had to be a tough afternoon for A’s reliever Zach Jackson who loaded the bases for Puk and he ended up taking the loss because he was responsible for the runners left on base.

#5 The A’s open a three game series with the Royals tonight the A’s will start Cole Irvin (2-4, 3.14) he’ll be opposed by the Royals Zack Greinke (0-4, 5.05) this ball game is underway at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.

Join Jeremiah Fridays for the A’s podcasts at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

A’s pen melts down in ninth hands M’s 2-1 win; Montas’ excellent pitching performance goes to waste

Oakland A’s starter Frankie Montas (47) pitched a gem but was lifted after eight innings of work against the Seattle Mariners at the Oakland Coliseum on Thu Jun 20, 2022 (AP News photo)

By Jerry Feitelberg

OAKLAND–A couple of baseball adages apply to Thursday afternoon’s game between the Seattle Mariners and the Oakland A’s. The first adage is the one that says the winning team has to record 27 outs.

The second adage says good teams find ways to win, and bad teams find ways to lose. The A’s found a way to lose on Thursday that had the fans booing the team after the game. The A’s Frankie Montas had his best outing of 2022.

Montas held the M’s hitless until two outs in the top of the eighth. The M’s broke up his no-hit bid with two singles. Montas retired J.P.Crawford for the final out in the eighth and left the game with the A’s ahead 1-0.

All the bullpen had to do was get three last three out to preserve the win for Montas. What happened in the top of the ninth left A’s fans shaking their heads. The A’s bullpen issued four walks and two wild pitches to give the M’s two runs without the benefit of a hit. Seattle managed just two hits in the game and won 2-1 to sweep the three-game series.

The A’s plated a run in the bottom of the first. A’s third baseman Sheldon Neuse led off with a single. M’s starter Robbie Ray retired the next two hitters. A’s DH Sean Murphy walked to send Neuse to second. Cristian Bethancourt followed with a single to drive in Neuse with the run.

There was a scary moment in the “s half of the fifth. Sheldon Neuse hit a slow grounder to M’s third baseman, Abraham Toro, with two out. Toro’s throw to first appeared to hit the first baseman Ty France in his midsection.

France dropped to the ground in agony. After, the M’s medical staff got him back on his feet. France was unable to continue. Dylan Moore replaced him at first base. Neuse was ruled safe on the play. Robbie Ray retired Jonah Bride for the third out. The A’s lead 1-0 after five.

Montas continued his excellent outing into the top of the eighth. Frankie retired the first two hitters he faced. The next hitter, M’s second baseman Adam Frazier, hitting .221, singled to left to break up Montas’ no-hit bid. M’s catcher Luis Torrens followed with a single to put Frazier into scoring position. Montas retired J.P.Crawford for the third out. The A’s still had the lead 1-0 after eight innings.

Things got a bit hairy in the top of the ninth. A’s manager Mark Kotsay called on righty Zach Jackson to pitch. Jackson committed the cardinal sin of walking the leadoff hitter in the ninth. He retired Julio Rodriguez for the first out. Jackson’s control was slightly off as he walked Jesse Winker, which sent Moore into scoring position. Jackson struck out Eugenio Suarez for the second out.

The A’s brought in A.J. Puk to face Kevin Padlo. He walked Padlo to load the bases. Seattle tied the game on Puk’s wild pitch to Abraham Toro. Puk walked Toro on a 3-2 pitch. The ball got by Christian Bethancourt. Winker scored on the pitch.

The M’s have scored two runs in the ninth without the benefit of a hit. Four walks and two wild pitches. The M’s lead 2-1 heading into the bottom of the ninth. A’s manager Mark Kotsay will probably be criticized for taking Montas out of the game. The A’s bullpen did not do the job. The ways the a’s are going, Montas has to wonder if he has to throw a no-hitter if he hopes to win a game.

The M’s closer, Paul Sewald, retired the A’s in order 1-2-3 in the bottom of the ninth to secure the win for Seattle 2-1. They swept the three-game series.

Game Notes: The A’s are now 23-48 for the year. They are competing with the Cincinnati Reds for the worst record in baseball. The Reds kept pace with the A’s as they lost to the LA Dodgers 10-5 on Thursday.

The A’s had lost ten consecutive home series for the first time since June 20th, 1916, when they were in Philadelphia. The A’s are 8-28 in their last 36 games. 

The A’s offense continues to flounder. The A’s line was one run, five hits, and no errors. The A’s have scored one run or fewer in 26 of the 71 games played this year. They are last in hitting with a team average of .209. Teams can’t win many games this way.

The A’s starting pitching has an ERA of 4.46 for the season, which is the second-highest in the American League. The bullpen is 1-7 with six blown saves and a 6.61 ERA over the last 25 games. These numbers indicate a team that one can say is not very good.

The A’s are on their way to Kansas City to face the Royals for three games starting Friday night. Lefty Cole Irvin (2-4, 3.14 ERA) will pitch for Oakland. Former AL Cy Young award winner, righty Zach Greinke(0-4, 5.05 ERA), will pitch for K.C. The game will start at 5:10 pm.

The time of the game was two hours and fifty-eight minutes. Eight thousand two hundred seventeen fans watched the A’s hand the M’s a 2-1 win. 

Oakland A’s podcast with Daniel Dullum: A’s too wild to stay in game against M’s in 2-1 loss; Oakland reliever Puk throws two wild pitches in 9th

The Seattle Mariners Jesse Winker scores from third base on Oakland A’s pitcher AJ Puk’s second wild pitch in the top of the ninth inning at Ring Central Coliseum in Oakland on Thu Jun 23, 2022

On the A’s podcast with Daniel:

#1 Daniel, the Oakland A’s (23-48) leading 1-0 for eight innings couldn’t hold on in the ninth inning as reliever AJ Puck threw two wild pitches that allowed two runs to scored as the Seattle Mariners (32-39) came away with a 2-1 win.

#2 Meanwhile the A’s back in the bottom of the first inning scored their only run of the game when Cristian Bethancourt hit a single that scored Sheldon Neuse. What makes this so unusual the A’s have had to scratch for getting a run of any kind.

#3 The A’s got superb pitching from starter Frankie Montas who threw shutout ball until he was lifted after eight innings of dealing. Montas’ line eight innings, two hits, two walks, and eight strikeouts.

#4 The A’s relivers Zack Jackson and AJ Puk couldn’t salvage the game in the top of the ninth. The A’s leading 1-0 saw the bases loaded and Puk replaced Jackson. Puk threw a wild pitch that allowed the Mariners Dylan Moore to score from third base to tie it up 1-1. Another Puk wild pitch allowed Jesse Winker to score from third for the Seattle go ahead run making it 2-1.

#5 The A’s go back to the drawing board and open a three game series in Kansas City where they’ll start Cole Irvin (2-4, 3.14) he’ll be opposed by the Royals Zack Greinke (0-4, 5.05) a 5:10 pm first pitch at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.

Join Daniel for Major League Baseball podcasts Thursday nights right here at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Oakland A’s podcast with Jerry Feitelberg: No Swinging A’s in series against Mariners

Oakland A’s shortstop Nick Allen (left) gets the ball too late as the Seattle Mariners Julio Rodriguez (right) slides in safely at second base in the top of the third inning at the Oakland Coliseum on Wed Jun 22, 2022 (AP News photo)

On the A’s podcast with Jerry F:

#1 Jerry, the Oakland A’s have simply have not been getting any hitting throughout the first two games of the series with an 8-2 loss on Tuesday and the Seattle Mariners blew the A’s out on Wednesday night 9-0.

#2 The A’s up and down their line up struggled on Wednesday night faced just two Mariners starter George Kirby who went six innings giving up five hits, one walk and six strike outs shutting out the A’s during his time on the mind keeping A’s hitters off balance.

#3 With the A’s with no runs scored only two players got two hits in the contest centerfield Ramon Laureano and catcher Sean Murphy which showed how much this team is struggling just to get on base.

#4 Also the A’s fifth pitcher in the game was position player Sheldon Neuse who was inserted to relieve in the top of the ninth inning retired three hitters in order who all hit the ball to the warning track. Neuse was left in the game as a designated hitter.

#5 The A’s battle the Mariners once more on Thursday to conclude the three game series at the Coliseum starting for the Mariners Robbie Ray (6-6, 4.25) and for the A’s Frankie Montas (3-7, 3.53) a 12:37 pm PDT first pitch

Join Jerry Thursdays for the A’s podcasts at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Mariners 5 run fifth too much for A’s with no chance to comeback in 9-0 loss

Seattle Mariners’ Jesse Winker celebrates with Julio Rodriguez, left, after hitting a two-run home run against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the fifth inning at the Oakland Coliseum on Wed Jun 22, 2022 (AP News photo)

Seattle. 9. 13. 0

Oakland. 0. 7. 0

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

By Lewis Rubman

OAKLAND–In 1954, the first year since 1948 in which the Yankees didn’t win the American League pennant–in fact, they won the World Series all those years– Douglas Wallop published a novel that soon became a hit Broadway musical and later a box office smash from Hollywood. That prophetic novel bore the prophetic title “The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant,” and its adaptations were heralded as “Damn Yankees!”

All of you know the story. Joe Hardy, a middle aged realtor from Washington, DC, makes a deal with the devil to become Shoeless Joe From Hannibal, Mo, the second coming of Joe Jackson.

A turning point comes when Joe, a lifelong fan of the Senators –who earned the motto “Washington, first in war, first in peace, and last in the American League”– playing for his favorite team, feels remorseful after breaking up a no hitter being pitched by Bobby Shantz. To keep Joe from opting out of his contract, the devil summons the temptress Lola, who confidently announces, “Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets.”

Shantz was a lefty who pitched for the Philadelphia and Kansas City A’s from 1949 through 1956 and didn’t have the chance to pitch for a good ball club until he joined the Yankees in 1957. Nonetheless, he managed to go 24-7,2.48 for the 1952 A’s, a team that went 79-75-1. accounting for an astounding 30% of Philadelphia’s wins.

I often think of Bobby Shantz when, as happened tonight, Paul Blackburn is the A’s starting pitcher. His win share doesn’t match Shantz’s feat of 70 years ago, much less Ned Garver’s achievement of 1951, when he went 20-12, 3.73 for the 52-102 St. Louis Browns, but with 26% of Oakland’s 23 victories at game time, Blackburn is worthy of their company, especially in the light of the expansion of rotations between the early 1950s and early 2020s.

Game recap: And let’s not forget that the season’s still young. When the game was over and Seattle had defeated Oakland by the resounding score of 9-0, Blackburn was the losing pitcher and has a record of 6-3, 2.97, while the A’s, who took the field at 23-45 were 23-46.

Blackburn had lasted only four plus innings and was charged with seven runs, all earned, on 10 hits, two walks, and a wild pitch. Of his 92 deliveries, 58 were counted as strikes, but he still was credited with 26% of his team’s wins.

The Mariners’ starting pitcher, George Kirby, didn’t come to the Coliseum with any historical, literary, or show biz baggage of which I’m aware, just a more than respectable 1-2, 2.56 record with a fourth place team in a five team division.

The 24 year old righty hadn’t started a major league game before this year. He pitched the first five innings of the May 24 game against Oakland at T-Mobile Field, getting a no decision in the A’s 7-5 win, allowing four runs, all earned, on eight hits, including a homer, and striking out nine without walking anyone.

He left tonight’s contest after hurling six shutout frames, holding Oakland to five hits and a walk. He struck out six and brought his record to 2-2,3.12, throwing 96 pitches, for strikes, in the process.

The game started inauspiciously for the home team. JP Crawford led off with a line drive to center that fell in for a single. Ramón Laureano dropped the ball, and Crawford advanced to second. For some reason the scorer ruled it a double.

Two batters later, Julio Rodríguez smacked a 92 mph sinker over Laureano’s head and on a hop over the dead center field fence, scoring Crawford. In spite of a subsequent walk and wild pitch, Blackbourn got himself out of the jam, and the A’s came up for their first at bats trailing by only 1-0.

Blackburn coughed up another tally with two down in the second and Cal Raleigh, batting in the ninth position with an average of .185 (.183 from the left side) tore the leather off of another 92mph slider from the A’s righty. This one didn’t bounce, coming down 416 feet deep, over the fence in center to double the Mariners’ lead.

France led off the third with a single to left center and was forced out at second on Nick Allen’s nifty backhanded grab and throw of a Rodríguez grounder to the left side. Rodríguez proceeded to steal second and score on Jesse Winker’s single to right center.

After Blackburn fanned Eugenio Suárez for the second out, Winker made it to third on Taylor Trammell´s high bouncer down the right field foul line that Stephen Vogt, playing first, leaped for but couldn’t come down with.

It went for another double. Justin Upton walked to clog the basebaths, but Blackburn struck out Adam Frazier and once more limited the Mariners to a single run. But that run made it 3-0, Seattle.

The visitors made up for not scoring in the fourth by adding five runs to their lead in the fifth. After Rodríguez’s lead off single to right center, Winker unloaded on a changeup to blast his sixth round-tripper of the year. This one went 422 feet into the right field seats.

Blackburn stuck around long enough to give up a single to Suárez and a double to Trammell before ceding to Domingo Tapia. The reliever caught Upton looking at a third strike, but Frazier reached first when his grounder to short allowed Suárez to cross the plate. After Raleigh went down swinging, Crawford drove Trammell and Frazier in with a double to right center.

All of Tapia’s inherited runners had scored, putting the M’s up 8-zip. They added another run in the seventh on a single by the pinch hitting Abraham Toro and a double to the also pinch hitting Kevin Padlo, after which Lou Trivino came on to close out the frame.

Austin Pruitt set the M’s down in order in the eighth.

Penn Murfee was on the mound for the Seattle when the A’s came to bat after the seventh inning stretch shut them down, allowing only a single to Vogt. He was followed by Tommy Milone in the eighth, who set the Athletics down to a conga beat–one, two, three, kick– and hung around for the ninth to close the game out.

Utility infielder Sheldon Neuse pitched–I should say lobbed–the top of the ninth for the disheveled A’s. He retired the side in order, all the outs coming on flies to the warning track. The green and gold will try to salvage a win out of this series tomorrow at 12:37 when they send Frankie Montás (3-7,3.53) to the mound to duel with the M’s Robbie Ray (6-6,4.25).

Mariners back to back to back home runs in 7th inning bury A’s 8-2 at Coliseum

Seattle Mariners’ Jesse Winker, right, smashes an RBI double in front of Oakland Athletics catcher Sean Murphy (12) in the top of the sixth inning at the Oakland Coliseum Tue, Jun 21, 2022. (AP News photo)

Seattle. 8. 12. 0

Oakland. 2. 7. 0

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

By Lewis Rubman

OAKLAND–The Oakland Athletics opened their three game series against the Seattle Mariners hoping to extend their one game winning streak that left them at 23-45 to 24-45.

They failed miserably, and when all was said and done, the green and gold’s record had fallen to an abysmal 23-46, dropping them to seven games behind the visiting Mariners in the battle for fourth place in the five team division. Seattle had entered the fray at 29-39 and emerged from it with a balance of 30-39

The team from the Puget Sound sent Marco González, 30 year old southpaw veteran of eight big league campaigns, who had been the first round pick of the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2013 draft.

He brought a 3-7, 3.41 record with him and left after eight innings of excellent work, having allowed two runs, both earned, on seven hits, one of which went yard, and a walk bringing his ERA down to 3.33. He threw 101 pitches, 73 qualifying as strikes, on the way to earning his fourth win of the year against seven defeats.

The starting pitcher for the East Bay contingent was 28 year old right hander James Kaprielian, sporting the unenviable record of 0-5, 6.31. He didn’t perform in his only 2022 appearance against Seattle, a game the A’s won 7-5 at T-Mobile Park on May 24. He threw five innings and was responsible for all of the Mariners’ runs, and they were earned.

Tonight, he pitched well for five frames before being driven from the mound with one out in the Seattle sixth. He gave two runs, both earned, on five hits, one of which went the distance, two walks, and a hit batter. He struck out seven and had a pitch count of 89, 32 of which were balls.

There were a couple of faces in the A’s lineup we hadn’t seen in a while. Sheldon Neuse was at the hot corner, batting seventh, and Nick Allen followed him in the batting order and covering second. Both of them, along with southpaw reliever Kirby Snead, were recalled from Las Vegas earlier today.

In other roster moves announced today, Domingo Tapia was added to the roster as a substitute player. Dany Jiménez was added to the 15 day IL retroactive to Monday, Sam Moll was put on the Covid 19 list, and Matt Davidson was DFA’d. Luis Barrera, who had contributed significantly at the bat and on the field in Sunday’s win over Kansas City was optioned back to the Aviators yesterday shortly on Monday.

Taylor Trammell put the Mariners one up by depositing Karprielian’s first offering of the third, a 94 mph four seamer, 399 feet, over the fence in dead center field. It was his third home run and eighth RBI of the season.

A hit batter and a double play later, Ty France bounced a ball just over Christian Bethanccourt’s head, down the first base line and stretched it into a two base hit. The A’s challenged Nic Lentz’s safe call, but it was, correctly, upheld. So, after two and a half frames, Oakland was on the short end of a 1-0 score.

It stayed that way until the top of the sixth, when Julio Rodríguez led off with a single to left and raced home on the double that Jessel Winker lined into the right field corner. Eugenio Suárez followed that with a fly that Pinder chased down at the left center field wall in front of the Ray Fosse sign.

That was it for Kaprielian, who was relieved by the newly returned Kirby Snead, who ended the threat by getting Justin Upton to fly out to right and picking off Dylan Moore, who had pinch hit for Adam Frazier and received an intentional pass.

Kirby walked Taylor Trammell and Cal Raleigh to open the top of the seventh, throwing in a wild pitch that allowed the former to take second while the latter was at bat. Then he showed himself to be his own best friend by inducing JP Crawford to bounce into a 1-6-3 double play.

This brought Austin Pruitt out of the bullpen and on to the mound. He should have stayed in the bullpen. Ty France singled up the middle to bring in Trammell with Seattle’s third tally, which was charged to Snead.

He followed this up by surrendering back to back to back blasts to Julio Rodríguez, Winker, and Suárez. Those round trippers measured 445, 439, and 411 feet respectively. Pruitt finally retired the side by striking out Moore. Oakland now trailed 7-0.

Their bats finally woke up in the home seventh, thanks to the returning infielders. Neuse hit a one single to right center and trotted home on Allen’s two out 378 foot four bagger that landed in the left field seats, 378 feet from home. It came off a 79 mph change up and cut the M’s margin to 7-2.

It was no surprise that Pruitt didn’t come out to pitch the eighth after his disastrous third of an inning on the mound. Adam Oller took care of that frame. In spite of a two out double, confirmed on review, again correctly, by Raleigh, Oller held the score to 7-2.

He didn’t do as well in the visitors’ ninth. After surrendering a single to France, he hit Rodríguez with a pitch and loaded the bases with a walk to Winker. He almost pulled a Houdini, retiring Suárez on an infield fly and fanning Moore. But Justin Upton singled to left, driving in only one run, thanks to baseball´s don’t rub it in unwritten rule. So the A’s went into the ninth with an 8-2 deficit.

Erik Swanson set the A’s down 1-2-3 in the eighth, and Ken Giles did the same in the ninth

The same teams will play each other tomorrow at 6:40 with George Kirby (1-2, 3.56) pitching for the M’s and hard luck Paul Blackburn (6-2, 2.26) going for the A’s in a battle of right handers.

Preview of Seattle Mariners-Oakland A’s: Three-game series gets underway Tuesday night

Oakland A’s catcher Sean Murphy hits a bottom of the sixth inning home run in front of Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez at the Oakland Coliseum on Sun Jun 19, 2022. Murphy and the A’s host the Seattle Mariners Tue Jun 21, 2022 in Oakland. (AP News photo)

By Jerry Feitelberg

OAKLAND–The Oakland A’s have an off day on Monday. The players can savor the win over the Kansas City Royals on Sunday. Jared Koenig earned his Major League victory as he and the bullpen pitched a 4-0 shutout.

The A’s return to the field Tuesday night as they meet the Seattle Mariners for the second time this season. The Mariners dominated Oakland last season, winning 15 out of 19. When the A’s visited Seattle from May 23rd to 25th for three games, they stunned the M’s by winning the series two games to one.

Both teams are not playing well in 2022. The Mariners find themselves ten games under .500 at 29-39. The M’s bolstered their starting rotation when they signed lefty Robbie Ray as a free agent. Ray in 2021 Cy Young Award-winning pitcher. Ray is slated to pitch Thursday afternoon. His record is 6-6, with a 4.25 ERA.

The A’s have lost 17 of the last 22 games played. They have won only three games in June. The A’s are in fifth place in the AL West, and they trail the first-place Houston Astros by 19 games. A’s manager Mark Kotsay has not allowed his players to quit. He gets maximum effort from every player on the squad. They may not be winning, but it’s not for lack of effort.

The pitchers for the three-game series will feature on Tuesday night the A’s James Kaprielian on the hill. Kaprielian is still looking for his first win. He is 0-4, with an ERA of 6.31. Lefty Marco Gonzalez will pitch for Seattle. Gonzalez is 3-7, and his ERA is 3.41.

Wednesday night’s game will see the A’s best pitcher, Paul Blackburn, going for his seventh win. Blackburn went eight innings in his last outing. The A’s are thrilled with his improvement. Settle will counter with George Kirby. Kirby is 1-2, 3.56 ERA.

As mentioned above, Robbie Ray goes for Seattle on Thursday afternoon. Frankie Montas (3-7, 3.53) will pitch for Oakland.

The key players on the Seattle roster are shortstop J.P.Crawford, first baseman Ty France, third baseman Eugenio Suarez, centerfielder Julio Rodriguez, and outfielders Jesse Winker and Justin Upton. Suarez and Winker are in the first season with the M’s.

The M’s made a trade with Cincinnati to bring them to Seattle. Justin Upton has played in only four games since signing as a free agent after the LA Angels designated him for assignment.

Upton is a lifetime .262 hitter and has recorded 324 homers and 1000 RBIs in his 16 years in the big leagues. Rookie Julio Rodriguez, who hails from the Dominican Republic, is hitting a solid. 265 with eight homers and 24 RBIs’

The M’s bullpen has used two pitchers to close out games. Paul Sewald and Diego Castillo each have four saves. Other bullpen stalwarts are the 39-year-old Sergio Romo, Eric Swanson, Andres Munoz, Penn Murfee, and former A’s pitcher, lefty Tommy Milone.

The A’s would love nothing better than to sweep the M’s. It’s possible, but the hitting has to improve. The A’s as a team are hitting .210.

The team on-base=percentage is .274, and the on-base plus slugging OPS is .608. The A’s have a woeful record of 8-24 at the Coliseum. The M’s are 14-21 on the road. As a team, they are hitting .232. Their OBP is .315, and their OPS is 6.89.

The stats indicate the M’s should win the series. The problem in baseball is that one never knows what will happen on any given night. The A’s have unveiled a new third baseman, Jonah Bride. Bride has shown that he can handle Major League pitchers.

He is playing third base, and it has been easy for him handling the rocket shots coming his way. The A’s are confident he will improve as he gets more playing time. Christian Bethancourt plays both first base and can handle the catching and has wielded a hot bat lately.

Sean Murphy hit a big three-run blast on Sunday to help the A’s get the 4-0 win over Kansas City. If they are to improve, the A’s need the hitters to put the bat on the ball.

Each team will be looking for silver linings in this series. The A’s want to get good hitting and good pitching. The same goes for Seattle. Several scouts will be at the game as the teams are getting close to the August 2nd trade deadline. It should be interesting.

Oakland A’s podcast with Barbara Mason: Koenig shows improvement pitches 5 plus innings of shutout ball against KC

Oakland A’s starter Jared Koenig fires against the Kansas City Royals line up in first inning action at the Oakland Coliseum on Sun Jun 19, 2022 (AP News photo)

On the A’s podcast with Barbara:

#1 Oakland A’s starter Jared Koenig and three relievers shutout the visiting Kansas City Royals 4-0 at the Oakland Coliseum to avoid a sweep.

#2 The three hit shutout was Koenig’s first Major League win of his career after having two rocky starts. Koenig pitched 5.2 innings, two hits, four walks and no strike outs.

#3 On Father’s day Koenig’s father Greg watched his son pitch to his first MLB victory and what made it sweeter Koenig who grew up 75 miles south of the Coliseum.

#4 The A’s bats were alive for Sunday’s game against the Royals, Seth Brown had three hits and a home run. A’s catcher Sean Murphy hit a home run in the cause.

#5 The A’s will take Monday off as they prepare to host the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night at 6:40 pm PDT starting for Seattle Marco Gonzalez (3-7, 3.41) and for Oakland James Kaprielian (0-4, 6.31) at the Oakland Colisuem.

Join Barbara for the A’s podcasts Mondays at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

That’s Amaury News and Commentary: The best division in baseball plus

Copy of the New York Daily News announcing the New York Mets and New York Yankees in the Subway World Series in 2000 edition could the two cross city rivals meet again in this year’s fall classic? (photo by wikipedia)

The Best Division in Baseball, Plus

That’s Amaury News and Commentary

By Amaury Pi-González

OAKLAND–For the first time this 2022 season there will be a third wild card team on each league. No division in baseball is better than the American League East, with the New York Yankees walking-away with the best record in baseball and Toronto, Tampa Bay and Boston poised for a tremendous race.

For the first time ever, a division could have three wild card teams going into the postseason and a total of four of the five teams in this division playing in October.

The American League East is the only division in baseball with four teams playing over .500. In the AL West, there is only one team to beat, Dusty Baker’s Houston Astros, they are the best team and will stay in first place.

The LA Angels are sputtering again, after a very nice start, they went into a funk lost 14 in a row, from May 25 to June 8,and Joe Maddon (one of the best managers in baseball) was sent packing.

Next managerial change could come from Seattle, where expectations were high for this team to win this year. Manager Scott Servais and General Manager Jerry DiPoto are in the hot seat. The Texas Rangers spend a fortune (close to half billion dollars) signing Corey Seager and Marcus Semien, they are both starting to play the way everybody expected, but I do not believe they have the pitching to overtake their State rivals Houston Astros.

The Oakland A’s are what they are. All the other teams have more established talent, they are trying to compete with rookie manager Mark Kotsay, a good baseball man, but the best jockey in the world cannot win the race if the horse is limping.

In the Central Division, considered the weakest in all the major leagues, supposed to be an easy one for the Chicago White Sox, but the great Tony LaRussa is not having much fun so far, star closer Liam Hendriks just placed into the IL.

The Minnesota Twins will be in the playoffs, as of today leading that division and the Cleveland Guardians are playing good baseball, leading the way at third-base, José Ramirez an early candidate for MVP. Watch out for the Indians, sorry, the Guardians, they have a good team and a terrific manager in Terry Francona.

There are some 100 games left for each team this season. While in New York they are talking about a Subway Series, Mets vs Yankees. Most recently, in 2000 the New York teams faced each other with the Yankees winning in five games, a memorable series, which I happened to worked for the Latino Baseball Network.

In other cities there is lots of disappointment. In Los Angeles, the Dodgers, whose manager, Dave Roberts predicted a 2022 World Series win during an appearance on the Dan Patrick Show, when he said “We will win the World Series in 2022. We will win the World Series this year.”

The Dodgers have pitching problems, ace Walker Buehler recently went into the IL, Julio Urias is not going to win 20 games again this season (he was the only to win 20 last season) plus mixed with an inconsistent offense, the Dodgers have stuff to “figure out”, they do have the talent.

The San Diego Padres, at this time, even with the delayed return of superstar Fernando Tatis Jr, looks like the team that could win this division. Bob Melvin is doing a great job, which is nothing new for the three-time Manager of the Year.

The San Francisco Giants, while they are not going to win 107 games again, they find a way to win series, starter Jacob Junis went into the IL, veterans like Evan Longoria and Brandon Belt, can’t seem to stay healthy.

Giants lost some pieces in the off-season, perhaps the biggest one, starter Kevin Gausman who had his best year ever in 2021 with a 14-6 record, and 2.81 ERA, he left for a very lucrative contract in Toronto. Nobody expected the Giants to have a similar season as 2021, which was a dream season, when every player at the same time, had great years.

Trades: The new deadline this year is set for August 2. There will be many trades, some earlier than others, but the greatest commodities are starting pitchers. they are in high demand. Many of the teams with hopes of postseason play will reinforce themselves. In today’s game the old saying “you never have enough pitching” is new again.

Happy Fathers Day weekend.

Join Amaury Pi Gonzalez for all the play by play of Oakland A’s baseball on the A’s Spanish radio network and on flagship station Le Grande 1010 KIQI San Francisco and News and Commentary at http://www.sportsradioservice.com